The U-13 and U-15 teams of Abia Warriors Football Club of Umuahia
currently being packaged in its academy, have been formally unveiled.
The ceremony, which took place at the Umuahia Township Stadium, was
attended by who is who in sports in Abia State including the State
Head of Service, Dr Vivien Umah and the newly appointed Commissioner
for Sports, Dr Martins Okoji who performed the unveiling exercise
amidst pomp and pageantry.
In his speech, Dr Okoji commended Abia Warriors football club for
establishing the academy which he noted, was in line with Governor
Okezie Ikpeazu’s policy of developing the youths in order to make them
better citizens in future.
The Commissioner noted that some renowned footballers in the word like
Pele, Diego Maradona, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo all started
from the academy and expressed confidence that the twinkling,
twinkling little stars currently in Abia Warriors football academy,
will soon blossom to become diamonds in the sky.
He commended Governor Ikpeazu for finding him worthy to serve as a
member of the state executive council and assured him that the sports
ministry will always stand behind him.
Earlier, the Chairman, Abia Warriors football club, Chief Emeka Inyama
said the club embarked on the academy as a way to give back to society
and to discover hidden talents and nurture them to stardom.
He revealed that the academy boys were selected after a thorough
screening exercise, pointing out that they were picked with their
accurate ages for proper development.
” This is the making of Maradonas, Ronaldos and Messis. We want to
get it right by setting the right foundations and structures that will
out live us so that even when we’re no longer there tomorrow, there’ll
be structures for whoever is there to work with”, Chief Inyama said.
He revealed that apart from the current U-13 and U-15 teams, plans
were underway to float the U-7 team in order to inculcate in them, the
right professional standards right from their infancy, and to ensure
that in the years to come, Abia Warriors will no longer look for
players from other clubs or other parts of the country as the academy
players will simply graduate to the main team.
Highlight of the occasion was a friendly match between Abia Warriors
U-13 team and their Golden Boot fc counterparts from Lokpaukwu, in
Umunneochi Local Government Area which the Kelvin Ejeh tutored young
Warriors won 3-1 thanks to a scintillating brace from Wisdom Joseph
and a stunning free kick from star midfielder, Henry Udezuka while
Nwankwo Sunday netted the consolation for the visitors.